In the exam hall or before the exams everybody feels the butterflies flying in the stomach. This is how we experience stress during examinations.
What is stress?
Stress is the physical and mental response of the body to demand made upon it. It is the result of our reaction to outside events. Stress is an outcome of:
- Examinations and surprise tests. We get stressed during our examinations. Most of the time we get nervous we don’t know the answer to some questions. Our hands start sweating and our mind blanks out at that time.
- When we don’t complete a particular assignment at the given time, we panic because of the little time left with us. We cannot give our best at this point of time.
- Returning to studies after a long break also is one reason for stress in students. We forget many topics that we had previously learned and read.
- Because of poor time management many students suffer from a great loss. Sometimes they study very much, sometimes they play too much or sometimes they spend most of their day on screens.
- Various problems at home also gives us a lot of stress. We cannot focus on studies or any other work. The fights between parents impacts a child in a negative manner.
- Noise pollution is also a cause of stress. Students are not able to relax while listening to continuous sounds coming from a party, construction site and neighbourhood.
Types of stress
- Eustress – It is the positive cognitive response to stress that is healthy, or gives one a feeling of fulfillment or other positive feelings. The goal is not too far out of reach but is still slightly more than one can handle. This fosters challenge and motivation since the goal is in sight. The function of challenge is to motivate a person toward improvement and a goal. Eustress is indicated by hope and active engagement.
- Distress – A range of symptoms and experiences of a person’s internal life that are commonly held to be troubling, confusing or out of the ordinary. Mental distress can potentially lead to a change of behavior, affect a person’s emotions in a negative way, and affect their relationships with the people around them. Certain traumatic life experiences such as: stress, lack of sleep, use of drugs or alcohol, assault, abuse or accidents can induce mental distress. This type of stress is negative and can deplete or destroy the energy for life.
How does stress affect us?
It increases our heart rate and muscle tension and causes headache, jaw ache, insomnia. It causes many diseases like asthma, hyperactivity, etc and the digestion slows causing ‘butterflies’ in stomach effect. It mentally affects us more. We start thinking negatively. it slows decision making ability and stunts the problem solving skills. There is a decrease in our concentration and focus. We often start forgetting about many things. We experience loneliness and worry about the future or the past. Increase intake of alcohol, cigarettes and caffeine to relax. We tend to isolate ourselves from our family members, friends and neighbours. We feel utterly unmotivated and lose our sense of humor.
We should not let stress affect us immensely. We should cope up with stress. Talking to anyone about our mental health can help. There are many methods to prevent stress which I will discuss in the next article.